Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden.

9 Dec 2022.


Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden – India’s largest botanical garden – is currently under threat because of severe land erosion by River Ganga.

About Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden

  • The Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden was previously known as the Indian Botanical Garden and the Calcutta Botanical Garden. It is situated in West Bengal’s Howrah, near Kolkata.
  • It hosts wide range of rare plants, with the number of species collection reaching over 12,000 spanning across 109 hectares of land.
  • Hence, this botanical garden is considered to be the “largest man-made Plant Kingdom”. It comes under the control of the Botanical Survey of India (BSI), which comes under the aegis of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
  • The garden was founded in 1787 by an army officer of East India Company mainly to identify new plants having a commercial value like teak and grow the species for trading purposes.
  •  The famous attraction of this botanical garden is The Great Banyan, which is known for being the largest tree in the world.
  •  It also hosts a large collection of orchids, bamboos, palms, and plants of the screw pine genus (Pandanus).
  • It houses fauna like Jackal (Canis aureus), Indian mongoose and the Indian Fox (Vulpes bengalensis).

Why is the botanical garden under threat?

  • A recent inspection revealed that the 1.8 km stretch of the Ganga River bank lining the botanical garden is eroding because of the swelling of the river.
  • This is threatening to wash away the parts of the garden’s fencing and its inner plantations.
  • While the garden comes under the jurisdiction of the BSI, the Kolkata Port Trust (KPT) has the jurisdictional command over the length of the Ganges from Farakka to Ganga Sagar.
  • Both these organizations have recognized the problem but failed to solve it because of the funding constraints.
  • The river has encroached into 200 meters of the garden’s southern side. Several trees that are close to the river have already collapsed or are on the verge of collapse because of severe soil erosion.

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